Dodge Middle School raises $3,200 for Lymphoma and Leukemia SocietyDodge Middle School student council advisor Kelsey Knox was pleased with the $120 students donated to the Pennies for Patients program to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society last year. But she’s thrilled about the $3,200 they donated this year.
Dodge Middle School student council advisor Kelsey Knox was pleased with the $120 students donated to the Pennies for Patients program to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society last year. But she’s thrilled about the $3,200 they donated this year.
Last year, Knox said, the DMS student council’s fundraiser asked students to contribute $1, and in return, those students could wear a hat to school for a day. It was nice collecting the $120, but Knox knew they could do more.
When it came time for the student council to plan this year’s event, they decided to try a penny war. In penny wars, students bring in loose change and drop it into jars in their Tiger Time rooms. The number of pennies are cancelled out by the number of silver coins that are donated. At the end of each day, all of the change –- pennies and silver coins alike -– are counted out and a total is given.
That was part of the fun, Knox said. The top classes were announced every day, which usually resulted in kids going out of their way to hit those classrooms with more silver change to cancel out the pennies. There was a different leader class in each grade every day of the week, thanks to the spirit of the event.
“The kids really got into it,” Knox said. “My goal at first was $200. We did $200 in that first day so we decided to set it at $1,000, but I never expected them to blow that out of the water. The kids really had a blast with it.”
The Tiger Time classrooms that collected the most money won ice cream parties, which will be held this week. But for some kids, the event was more about the competition or the ice cream. Some kids shared stories of how leukemia or lymphoma had touched their lives through the illness of a loved one. One student’s family donated $50 in pennies because his grandfather is nearing the end of a long battle with leukemia.
“It definitely kind of hit home for some of these students,” Knox said.
The day-to-day amount collected also increased throughout the week. Where students hit $200 on Monday, the school collected $1,700 on Friday. The daily totals, added together, came to $3,232. Area banks allowed the school to bring in change for counting for free. Knox was at the bank for over an hour Friday as the change was counted.
Knox expects the school will run a similar fundraiser for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society next year.
“We found out this would work. I don’t know if we can beat that amount next year, but at least we know we can make a difference,” she said.